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Izotope Neutron - deal or no deal? #3029038 02/14/20 05:45 PM
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KuruPrionz Offline OP
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Posting this here after getting an sale offer from Izotope this am and seeing Craig mention using one of their plugins to confirm an aspect of the mix on his latest project.
They'll sell me Neutron 3.1 Standard for $75, usually $199. A nice discount, not the most convenient timing - I've got until Monday.

I'll be surfing for reviews.
The Million Dollar Question - Is it worthy and useful?

Thanks in advance for any and all experiences and opininons!!!!


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Re: Izotope Neutron - deal or no deal? [Re: KuruPrionz] #3029044 02/14/20 06:33 PM
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Nowarezman Offline
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I've played with the demo, and I have a close friend who mixes/masters with Neutron and other Izotope products.

The Izotope stuff is generally (there could easily be exceptions) not for people who already have a pro-level methodology for mixing, and the hard/software to go with it.

Altho', even a working pro might be surprised at what Neutron might reveal about a mix.

Neutron can get almost anyone except utter newbies to a decent mix in record time, no question. And the support is good, the products are incredibly sophisticated, and they are a company to watch.

If you prefer to learn mixing the ol-fashion way, from the ground up, understanding all the nuances and training your ears the old incremental, painstaking way by turning knobs on real gear (including good software emulations) then Neutron won't train you up "the right way".

But for $75? It's worth it for almost anyone at any level of expertise - if nothing else but to give you a quick way to test and question your mixes, and maybe even just go with Neutron on occasion and swallow your pride.

But you'll never be a top-notch mixer if all you ever use are these AI-enchanced mixing products. Still, your mixes might sound great, and few could tell the difference.

It's kinda like you learned to ride a bike, but never took the training wheels off. Sure, you can ride, but.....

nat

Re: Izotope Neutron - deal or no deal? [Re: Nowarezman] #3029046 02/14/20 07:02 PM
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KuruPrionz Offline OP
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Thanks!! Your perspective is helpful.

I've been working with recording on and off for a LONG time, did a 30 minute long project on 16 track Tascam - studio time in exchange for eliminating ground loops and streamlining a couple of patch bays. I've done live sound quite a few times and have played at least a couple thousand gigs.

15 months ago, I decided to challenge myself by entering remix contests on metapop.com. My last one was 4 months ago, I did 18 remixes in 11 months.

We grow as we go! I found mixing other people's tracks and stems very freeing since I had no contact with any of them and no real investment in the material presented other than trying to learn and improve.
I did evolve a flexible set of methods for crafting mixes.

Tension and release are very important to me. I am also both capable and phobic about what I call "kitchen sink mixes" where there is too much going on. I love it when great music is presented in an essential way, without tons of tracks tossed in.

I tend to use lots of parallel tracks, my initial tracks don't have any plugins or as few as possible. I duplicate the naked tracks multiple times, add various plugins on those that I feel enhance the mood and direction of the song and then automate all of those tracks so things slide subtly in and out of the mix where appropriate. It is fairly tedious but I love the results when I get it right.

It makes me wonder how useful a Neutron premix will be in that context or what it can tell me about my own "final" mix.
I may just gamble the $75 and find out but I am looking forward to hearing everybody's feedback since I have a few days to decide. Cheers, Kuru


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Re: Izotope Neutron - deal or no deal? [Re: KuruPrionz] #3029051 02/14/20 07:23 PM
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Nowarezman Offline
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Yeah, it's got a bunch of different modules that you can work with one at a time or in combinations. This in addition to the more AI-powered overall sound sculpting options. If even just one of the modules becomes a favorite for you, then it's worth the $75 in my book. Two, then it's a steal.

nat

Re: Izotope Neutron - deal or no deal? [Re: KuruPrionz] #3029056 02/14/20 07:42 PM
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The tool you referenced that I use is the tonal balance plug-in that's part of Ozone. It doesn't do processing, it's more about analytics.

Like Nowarezman, I prefer to do a mix or master from the ground up. That even includes presets.The only time that presets are really useful to me is when mastering an album project where everything was recorded under the same conditions - same studio, same mics, same personnel, etc. Usually if I then tweak a song using a specific set of plug-in, I can create a preset that gets the other tracks where they need to be...although they always need a few tweaks.

Bear in mind that I review products, so I try things I might normally not try...for example, Ozone's mastering assistant. I was rather surprised at how it made the same kind of choices I did, and if I mastered something and then applied the mastering assistant, the results were quite close.

But, it sounds like you have a methodology for mixing that is not standard, so I question the usefulness of a standard approach applied to what you do. Then again, remember that Neutron is much more than just a dynamic EQ! (An area where the "AI" really comes in handy is with dynamic EQ, because the algorithm can find where certain frequencies need to be altered at specific times.) It has a compressor, exciter, gate, "sculptor," and transient shaper. Neutron basically replaced their "Alloy" effects suite plug-in. So, even if you don't use the "AI" elements, you still have a useful, and powerful, processor. In particular, if you don't have an exciter or transient shaper, they're probably worth the $75.

iZotope has always been careful to call what something like Mix Assistant does a "suggestion." The object isn't to do your mix for you, it's to get you in the ballpark really fast, and then you can tweak from there if you want more changes.

Re: Izotope Neutron - deal or no deal? [Re: KuruPrionz] #3029082 02/14/20 09:57 PM
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KuruPrionz Offline OP
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Thanks everybody for all the feedback.

I've downloaded the demo for Neutron 3 Advanced (they don't offer a trial of Standard). It has one more plugin and probably some other features, I need to read their comparison.
Today is shot, will install in the am and give it a spin.

Meanwhile, if anybody else has any feedback, I'd love to hear it! Thanks, Kuru


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Re: Izotope Neutron - deal or no deal? [Re: KuruPrionz] #3029219 02/16/20 12:16 AM
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It's... interesting that you can apply something different times to the same track and it will decide different things need to be "fixed".


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Re: Izotope Neutron - deal or no deal? [Re: Chip McDonald] #3029221 02/16/20 12:50 AM
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KuruPrionz Offline OP
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Originally Posted by Chip McDonald
It's... interesting that you can apply something different times to the same track and it will decide different things need to be "fixed".



That's been your experience with Neutron? Those sorts of things are good to hear before purchasing, I appreciate your feedback. :- D

They are touting the mix analyzer as a great "starting point" but I don't think it will be for my own work.
I am not that methodical when I track, I tend to make a mess and then carve it down. I don't like punching in, I'll just play a whole track.
Sometimes I create something cool that just "happened", I like to allow that.

Neutron would be analyzing things that are not going to exist when I am done automating my tracks with volume and pan.
So I probably won't use that tool much if at all.

As others have pointed out, Neutron has other tools that I might find useful. I plan on exploring those tomorrow and Monday.

Worst case, they allow you to register two of the modules and keep them as an incentive for using the demo.
If those don't do it for me I can always delete them. Cheers, Kuru


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Re: Izotope Neutron - deal or no deal? [Re: KuruPrionz] #3029663 02/18/20 06:40 PM
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KuruPrionz Offline OP
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I passed on the offer.
Budget was gobbled up on my successful quest to reduce/eliminate EDM due to changing circumstances (shared wall, neighbor maybe got a new video system or something, suddenly lots of hum).

I have Isotope Neutron Elements 1, it was on sale for $30.
Version 3 is now out and offers both the Exciter and the Transient Shaper.

I'm sure there will be another sale at a better time and I would rather update Elements for $30 or so.

Thanks to everybody for the feedback!!!

Also, by downloading the demo I was given Visual Mixer and Relay as seperate plugins for free.
I plan on checking their other products to see if demo'ing includes free plugins.
Free is a good price...


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